Unlike other distillery tours where you can walk through the whole place and see nary a craftsman, at Dickel you'll encounter most of the whole team. And the tour is also worth the trip because Cascade Hollow is one of the most beautiful and peaceful spots in the state.
In addition to their traditional No. 8 and No. 12 expressions, Dickel has recently emphasized their Barrel Select program. Made in small batches from 10 barrels at a time hand-selected by master distiller John Lunn, Barrel Select is an older and higher proof product than the bigger volume items in their portfolio. At 10 to 12 years old and 86 proof, Barrel Select is much more nuanced than No. 12, with strong notes of vanilla and spice.
Fortunately, a lot of local companies can help if you need to prepare or give food during the holiday season and don’t have the time in the next week to do so. The gift guide makes a lot of great suggestions for edible gifts, but what about that family gathering where you’re supposed to bring a casserole or a dessert? You’re covered there, too.
Martha Stamps Catering on West End has a number of sweet treats that you can give as gifts or repackage to present as your own (not that I would ever do that). The clementine pound cake and the orange cardamom baklava are calling my name. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 615-983-8850 and be sure to allow 48 hours for preparation before pickup.
The folks at Corner Market Catering in West Nashville released their holiday party menu as well as the items you can order for pickup on Christmas Eve. Order an entire meal or just a few sides or desserts to round out your table. But you better hurry; all orders must be placed by calling 615-352-0527 by this Friday, Dec. 19.
In fact, they received a writer's nod in this year's Best Of Nashville awards.
So it's exciting news for Franklin folks to hear that The Southern is expanding its oyster program to its sister restaurant in The Factory at Franklin, Saffire. Chef Vinny Tardo and his staff at Saffire have begun to offer a selection of raw oysters on the half shell including Malpeque, Wellfleet, Beausoleil, Sweet Jesus and Blue Points. If the raw bar isn't your thing, you can also order grilled oysters with BBQ Butter or Garlic Parmesan.
You might call the food fans you know "foodies," but I hate that word and refuse to use it, so instead of calling this guide "Gifts for Foodies," I instead present: Non-Terrible Presents for Food-Loving People Who Like Eating Food So Much They Might Also Want to Make It, Wear It, Play With It and Basically Celebrate It in as Many Ways as Possible.
A subscription to Lucky Peach magazine from Lucky Peach, $28
Lucky Peach is one of the best food-focused magazines to ever exist. They only publish quarterly, which is a shame, but each issue is packed with entertaining and thoughtful essays, recipes, interviews and other poignant and/or hilarious food-related writing by and about some of the coolest people working in the industry, including David Chang, Anthony Bourdain, Claudia Fleming and more.
What it is: Bark in the Dark
Where I found it: The Bang Candy Co., $25 for a canister/$3.50 for individual pieces
What it tastes like: You may already be familiar with Bang Candy's Sparkle Bark, the beloved glittery peppermint chocolate bark that's dusted with sparkles and crushed peppermint, but now Sparkle Bark has a delicious, darker counterpart. Bark in the Dark is a rich combination of dark and white chocolate, lavender, lemon and ginger, and I love you Sparkle Bark, but it's even better than its peppermint-flavored friend.
The little bits of crystallized ginger pop (literally — the chocolate is filled with popping candy that tickles your tongue as it melts) and the lavender adds a very subtle flowery flavor without tasting like hand lotion. The crushed lemon candy on top gives the candy an extra crunch and just a touch of fruitiness.
Although the book focuses on Memphis chefs like Andy Ticer and Michael Hudman of Hog and Hominy, Felicia Willett of Felicia Suzanne's and Kelly English from Restaurant Iris, there are still Nashville connections.
Some of the beautiful photography, including the cover and appetizing food shots, is the work of talented local photographers like Michael Rutherford and Andrea Behrends. Gregory's son and former Bravo Gelato founder Noel Glasgow assisted in the production of the project and is helping to publicize the effort. Both Glasgow and Gregory hope to replicate the project in Nashville and other cities around the region soon as a way to share the importance of dining and giving locally.
Since those first wines (developed from grapes grown on the estate), the estate has expanded its selection quite a bit and now sources its grapes not just from its own land, but from other regions as well (other growers in North Carolina as well as Washington and California). It is with grapes grown in California’s Dry Creek Valley that the winery’s Vanderbilt Reserve wines — a Cabernet Sauvignon and a Cabernet Franc — were made. Both wines were developed in 2012 and bottled earlier this year and both are quite bold (though the Cabernet Franc is slightly more delicate). The wines were also produced in limited quantities and retail in the mid-$20 range. Vanderbilt Reserve wines would make an excellent gift for the wine-loving Vanderbilt fan on your gift list this year.
Biltmore wines are available throughout the Nashville area, including Midtown Wine and Spirits and Frugal MacDoogal, but you may want to check first on availability or to see if they can be ordered since the wines are limited editions.
Carrington Fox: "After exhausting the trifle and malva pudding on the potluck table at the Friends of South Africa holiday party, I popped into the pop-up market and bought a few pounds of biltong and droewors from Carnivore Market. At first blush, it may seem like a surfeit of dried meat, but after all that trifle and malva pudding, it'll be perfect to jump-start a high-protein Paleo meat cleanse just in time for the holidays."
Laura Hutson: "I wasn't looking forward to eating the 1-year-old cake that had been in a Tupperware container in my freezer since my wedding day last year, so imagine my surprise when the mega slice of Elvis Cake from Sweet 16th was not only still palatable, but completely delicious. Happy anniversary, cake!"
The Charleston Food & Wine Festival is one of the pre-eminent culinary events in the South each year, and in 2015 they will celebrate the 10th iteration of the festival. Several Nashville chefs have already signed up to be a part of the party, so keep your eyes here for more information on that list as it becomes finalized. In addition to our local talent, chefs from across the region, the country and around the world flock to Charleston, S.C., the first weekend of every March to participate in special dinners, seminars and tasting events.
The full schedule is already pretty much pulled together, and tickets for most of the events are still on sale at the festival website. But if you're not exactly sure what your foodie friends might specifically like to experience in Charleston, you can also avail yourself of gift certificates or special event and hotel packages.
Since you'll probably be a little stir-crazy by early March, why not go outside and participate in the big Chefs Golf Classic at the Patriot’s Point golf course on Charleston Harbor? You'll scramble your way around the course while encountering pop-up cocktail bars and food tents along the links, and you might even end up with a famous chef on your team.
The episode, titled "When Pigs Fry," will air Sunday night at 9 p.m.:
Three chefs get sloppy as they dig for ingredients in a slop trough. Then, one chef has to grab their curry spices out of midair. Finally, one chef gets into a big, blue ball to make blueberry muffins.
There is no clip available, but check out the video of host Alton Brown taking you on a behind-the-scenes tour of the show's kitchen. It's pretty damned cool.
Gregory's been pretty busy lately, splitting her time between Firefly Grille in Green Hills and the newly opened Fly South in Leiper's Fork.
We'll be tuned in.
My Dads buddy just got a very nice Chevrolet Camaro Convertible by working off of…
My Dads buddy just got a very nice Chevrolet Camaro Convertible by working off of…
Thanks @HipsterBeatings! Nice read...
I'll leave this here as their selections are actually better than the above. Gummy bear…
But this looks like a suitable substitute